General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) reported a net income of $1.5 billion, or 89 cents per fully diluted share for the third quarter on Wednesday. The outcome is 14 percent lower than its earnings of $1.7 billion, or $1.03 per fully diluted share during the same period a year earlier.

The largest automaker in the United States reported a slight increase in revenue of $37.6 billion for the past three months from July to September. During the same period last quarter, General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) posted $36.7 billion revenue.

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General Motors Company (NYSE:GM)’s earnings declined by $0.1 billion, or 4 cents per share, due to the impact of special items. Excluding the special items, the automaker earned 93 cents per share during the quarter.

Dan Akerson, chairman and chief executive officer of General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) said, “GM had a solid quarter because customers around the world love our new vehicles, and we’re also seeing green shoots take hold on tough issues like complexity reduction, pensions, and Europe. We are going to keep playing offense with growth products like the Chevrolet Onix, Opel Mokka, and Cadillac ATS, and continue to systematically address business risks”

The automaker’s automotive net cash flow from operating activities increased from $1.8 billion last year, to the current $3.1 billion. Its automotive free cash flow for the third quarter was $1.2 billion, up from $0.3 billion a year ago.

GM’s earnings from international operations climbed from $0.4 billion, to $0.7 billion (EBIT-adjusted). Its earnings in South America were $1 billion, compared with almost break even during the same period in 2011. The automaker’s revenue in North America dropped from $2.2 billion last year to $1.8 billion.

In Europe, the company incurred $0.5 billion in losses during the past three months as the company restructured its business in the region. GM expects to report $1.5 billion to $1.8 billion (EBIT-adjusted) in losses in the region for the full-year 2012. The company expects better performance in the region in 2013 than the current year. By the middle of the decade, the company expects break even results because of new products- the small SUV called Mokka, and Adam, a small car.

In a statement, Dan Ammann, senior vice president and CFO of GM said, “While we have a lot of work to do, especially in Europe, it is encouraging to see our results begin to reflect the discipline we are bringing to bear on the overall business.” According to him, GM has already received 40,000 orders for Mokka.

According to General Motors Company (NYSE:GM), 30 percent of its salaried retirees in the United States agreed to take a lump sum payment instead of receiving a monthly pension check. The company also expects to close its agreement with The Prudential Insurance Company of America to assume the company’s responsibility for the pension plans of the remaining salaried retirees. General Motors Company (NYSE:GM) expects to make approximately $2.6 billion worth of total cash contributions to its U.S. salaried pension plan.

Meanwhile, Ford Motor Company (NYSE:F) reported flat earnings of $1.63 billion for the third quarter yesterday, due to the impact of the crisis in Europe.  The company’s earnings during the same period last year were $1.64 billion.